For Whom do You Practice Cultivation?  

When some people resort to the media to criticize qigong, some students waver in determination and give up their practice; it’s as if those who take advantage of the media are wiser than Buddha Fa, and that some practitioners cultivate for others. There are also people who become scared in the face of pressure and give up their cultivation. Can these kinds of people achieve Righteous Attainment? At the crucial moment, won’t they even betray a Buddha? Isn’t fear an attachment? Cultivation practice is like great waves sifting the sand: What remains is gold.

As a matter of fact, from ancient times to the present, human society has had a principle called mutual-generation and mutual-inhibition. So where there is good, there is bad; where there is righteousness, there is evil; where there is benevolence, there is wickedness; where there are humans, there are ghosts; where there are Buddhas, there are demons. It is even more present in human society. Where there is positive, there is negative; where there is advocacy, there is opposition; where there are those who believe, there are those who disbelieve; where there are good people, there are bad ones; where there are selfless people, there are selfish ones; and where there are people who can make sacrifices for others, there are people who will stop at nothing to benefit themselves. This was a principle in the past. Therefore, if an individual, a group, or even a nation wants to accomplish something good, there will be an equal amount of negative resistance. After success, one will thus feel that it was hard won and should be treasured. This is how mankind has developed (the principle of mutual-generation and mutual-inhibition will change in the future).

To put it another way, cultivation practice is supernormal. No matter who a person is, isn’t his criticism of qigong from an ordinary human perspective? Does he have any right to deny the Buddha Fa and cultivation? Can any of mankind’s organizations rise above Gods and Buddhas? Do those who criticize qigong have the capacity to command Buddhas? Will Buddhas be bad simply because he says so? Will Buddhas cease to exist simply because he claims that there are no Buddhas? The Dharma’s tribulation during the “Great Cultural Revolution” resulted from the evolution of cosmic phenomena. Buddhas, Daos and Gods all follow heaven’s will. The Dharma’s tribulation was a tribulation for humans and religions, rather than a tribulation for Buddhas.

The greatest reason for religions being undermined is the degeneration of the human mind. People worship Buddha not to cultivate Buddhahood, but to seek Buddha’s blessings so that they can make a fortune, eliminate adversity, have a son, or lead a comfortable life. Everyone accrued a lot of karma in previous lives. How could one live comfortably? How could a person not pay for his karma after doing bad deeds? Seeing that the human mind is not righteous, demons have come out of their caves one after another to bring trouble and chaos to the human world. Seeing that the human mind is not righteous, Gods and Buddhas have left their posts and abandoned the temples one after another. Many foxes, weasels, ghosts, and snakes have been brought into the temples by those who come to pray for wealth and profit. How could such temples not be in trouble? Human beings are sinners. Buddhas do not punish people, because all people are driven by ignorance and have already done harm to themselves. Moreover, they have accrued great amounts of karma for themselves, and great catastrophes soon await them. Would there still be any need to punish them? In fact, if a person does something wrong, he is bound to suffer retribution sometime in the future. It’s just that people do not realize it or believe it; they think that mishaps are accidents. 

Regardless of who or what social forces tell you not to practice cultivation anymore, you then give up your cultivation. Do you practice cultivation for them? Will they give you Righteous Attainment? Isn’t your inclination toward them blind faith? This, in fact, is true ignorance. Besides, we are not a qigong practice, but Buddha Fa cultivation practice. Isn’t any form of pressure a test to see whether your faith in the Buddha Fa is fundamentally strong? If you still are not fundamentally resolute in the Fa, everything else is out of question.  

Li Hongzhi

December 21, 1995